Factoring in the Human Element of Cybersecurity

December 12, 2023

Introduction

When it comes to cybersecurity, we often rely on our IT experts and installed software to protect our systems from digital threats. From tech support to firewalls, password managers, multi-factor authentication, and antivirus software…the list of tools and people that we rely on to stay safe online goes on and on!

In the midst of all of this, we can sometimes forget that we, too, play a critical role in keeping our systems and networks safe. At home or in the office, we each have a responsibility to protect the private data in our care.

It’s not just for the protection of our data, but because we can also be our data’s own worst enemy if we don’t take care online!

How Might YOU Be Putting Private Data at Risk?

Human error is actually responsible for 95% of cyberattacks. That means that YOU are the number one threat to your own private data!

How might you put yourself at risk? It can be as simple as clicking on malicious links, opening attachments from unknown senders, or sharing sensitive data by mistake. One wrong click, if your devices and systems aren’t properly equipped to defend themselves, can be disastrous.

Then there are also social engineering attacks. These threats use human psychology to trick people into revealing sensitive information or taking actions that compromise security. Because they rely on you acting emotionally against your better instincts, even people who are aware of the risks can easily fall victim to social engineering attacks. It only takes one moment of weakness!

In some cases, people with approved access steal from their own networks. Insider threats don’t have to be intentional to do serious damage; they can be unintentional and just as effectively steal data, disrupt operations and cost the organization tons of money.

How Human Behavior Affects Cybersecurity Positively

Just as we can do damage to our company with our actions, we can also help protect the private information kept on our systems and network!

Think about it. People are responsible for reporting suspicious activity to the appropriate teams, which can help identify and respond to attacks early on, before they cause significant damage.

We also play a part in protecting private data whenever we brush up on our Security Awareness Training. That knowledge helps us to identify and track potential threats, which help prevent them from happening in the first place!

Human behavior plays a vital role in protecting organizations from cyberattacks, simply by taking steps to mitigate online threats.

Conclusion

By now, you should have a better understanding of just how important your role is in keeping your entire organization secure from threats, whether they’re intentional and unintentional. They say “it takes a village,” and that rings just as true in the digital landscape of cyberspace! Together we can make the Internet a safer place to spend our time.

References

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